What are Some Good Vacation Ideas for Dog Owners?

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  • Last Modified Date: 10 November 2018
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Vacations with dogs can be a nightmare or they can be some of the most memorable trips of your life. It really all depends on the planning. Before you even decide to take Fido along, you should ask yourself a series of questions to make sure you are making the right choice. First, you should understand that taking your pet on vacation can make traveling more fun, but also more difficult. You need to account for toilet breaks, sleeping arrangements, and regular walks.

If your idea of a vacation is spending the day shopping or visiting attractions, then you (and Fido) would do better alone. Your dog's personality is also important. Animals who bark continuously or are skittish around strangers, be it humans or other animals, are no good candidates for traveling.

Vacations with dogs can be fun only if you are sure that the trip will benefit both you and the pet. If that is the case, here are a few ideas on how to make the most of a vacation.

Is your dog comfortable in cities? Just take him along when you are visiting relatives or checking in a hotel for a few days. Many hotels and bed and breakfasts are pet-friendly and will not object to your dog's presence. City holidays are a great idea for small dogs or those that do not need a lot of exercise and will be happy to wait for you as you go shopping.


Beach vacations with pets are becoming more and more commonplace. While many areas have leash laws, others allow owners to unleash the animal if it can be kept under voice control at all times. Most beaches allow dogs to swim. Some beaches, like Long Beach, in California, have a special area dedicated to dog owners.

Camping is also a dog-friendly option, and many campgrounds even have special trails marked for people who want to give their companions a special treat. Certain places, like 4Peaks Cabins in the Adirondacks, make vacations with dogs the ultimate experience, as they encourage vacationers to bring their pets along to make the outdoor experience more enjoyable.

Whatever you decide to do, research the destination and the options beforehand. Make sure the place you select accepts dogs and organize everything accordingly so both you and your pet can enjoy the trip as much as possible.


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Post 14

If you live anywhere close to New York, Canine Camp Getaway is the best vacation ever! They have all kinds of dog sports and activities and a pool your dog can swim in. We really like that our dog can be with us everywhere, even at meals or at the bar at night. We are counting down the days to June camp!

Post 13

My favorite is Canine Camp Getaway in Lake George, NY. They have a pool that dogs can swim in so my lab is very happy! They also have a ton of activities and several veterinarians right on staff in case your dog gets sick, and the dogs can be everywhere with you, even in the dining room and the bar at night. They also are a regular hotel so you have air conditioning and nice meals and wi-fi, and fun activities at night, too. I have gone camping with my dog but I prefer something a bit more comfortable. Canine Camp Getaway was perfect for us!

Post 12

The website for Florida State Parks has a link to their pet policies.

I hate this, but contrary to the above recommendation, pets are not allowed on beach at St. Joseph State Park in Florida. I wish there would be some way pet owners could petition all the state parks to allocate a couple hundred yards on their beaches for pets. I live in north Florida, 30 minutes from the beaches, but I have to drive over an hour to one that allows pets.

Post 11

As a long time Florida resident and dog owner who loves the beach, I regret to say that Florida is not very dog-friendly on the public beaches, even at state campgrounds, so check places out ahead of time.

Post 10

Camp Gone to the Dogs is amazing! They have every dog sport including Herding, Treibball, Flyball, Tracking, Tricks, Freestyle, all levels of Obedience; Crafts and more. They have incredible instructors who are 100 percent positive. They are the largest Camp in the USA.

Post 9

I'm a huge fan of Canine Outdoor Adventures at Glen Highland Farm in upstate NY. I've been to their Getaway several times - 175 acres (woods, meadows, trails, swimming, agility fields) to explore off leash with your dog and you can stay onsite in RVs, cabins or tents! They also have a group camp for those that are into sports with their dogs. I live in MD and it's so worth a six-hour drive!

Post 8

Camp Gone to the Dogs in Vermont is the best dog vacation. There are over 50 activities a day taught by the top dog trainers in the United States. Great classes, food and campers. A terrific experience.

Post 7

I took my Alaskan Malamute on vacation to Port Clinton, Ohio and we had a great time. We rode the ferry over to Put-In-Bay, then rode the tour train around the island. There is also a safari that you drive through that is pet friendly just minutes from Port Clinton. The safari also has a walk in zoo area with smaller animals and pets are allowed there. My dog and I had a wonderful time seeing all the sights together.

Post 6

My two favorites on the East coast are Camp Unleashed in Western MA (now also in Ashville, NC) and in Canada, Dog Paddling Adventures. Great fun and great people.

Post 5

The #1 pet friendly beach in the USA is Cape San Blas, FL. It is in the FL panhandle, 50 miles SE of Panama City (but couldn't be more different. It is located just East of Mexico Beach between Port St. Joe and Apalachicola and is a 20 mile peninsula with NO high rises! The last 10 of it's 20 miles is St. Joseph Peninsula State Park!

Enjoy soft, sugar white sand, uncrowded, pet friendly beaches and turquoise waters!

Post 4

There is a fantastic dog lover's package offered by Gunflint Lodge, Grand Marais, MN - three nights in a very nice cabin, dog socials, K-9 Olympics, nature hikes, all meals (food very good) all for $396 per person. Staff all extremely nice. John, the Naturalist, leads most activities and interesting presentations.

Post 3

Camping is often the easiest vacation to plan with a dog. Most campgrounds understand that tenants like to camp or RV with their furry friends. I have taken my dog on numerous camping trips, and he loves the freedom of being off leash.

We usually camp at the lake so he can swim hike, and chase various bugs, animals, and sounds. He also makes a good guard animal. He keeps scavengers at bay, and I'm sure he would alert us to predators.

Post 2

I just want to add that dog parks and beaches are becoming more and more commonplace. For example, in Hollywood Florida there is a beach area designated for dogs as well as a nearby park.

Many restaurants in South Beach allow some small dog breeds in their outdoor cafes. The choices are vast as some hotels are becoming more pet-friendly and begin to cater to pets. I like seeing dogs in public places as long as they are friendly and do not bite.

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